Screencast HowTo: IIS7 and PHP with FastCGI
Hello Dear Reader. I have been working with IIS7 for a while and I'm convinced that it's the cat's pajamas
I started playing with IIS7 and noticed that it had FastCGI support. This means I could plug in PHP or maybe Perl or even Ruby into IIS7. This would be nice because I could host my ASP.NET blog, but also drop in some of the nice open source PHP applications that are available for maybe a photo gallery or something, all hosted on the same IIS machine.
What I did was take Bill Staples blog post on FastCGI as a guideline and got IIS7, FastCGI and PHP running on my machine. I did three load tests, one with CGI, one with FastCGI and one with Kernal Output Caching (new IIS7 feature) turned on. This video shows a number of tools and how to configure IIS7 step by step.
You can watch the video/screencast on the new Hanselman Silverlight Player (thanks Tim!) or download the WMV directly. If you guys want more IIS7 videos in detail, give me feedback in the comments and I'll see what we can do about putting together a series over on http://www.iis.net.
FastCGI GoLive on IIS6
If you're running IIS5.1 or IIS6, there is a GoLive release available to put your PHP apps into production on IIS and FastCGI. If you've previously downloaded the FastCGI TP2 release, be sure to get the latest GoLive version for IIS5.1/6.
There's also an actively maintained FastCGI IIS Forum with members of the team and MVPs helping out.
FastCGI for IIS7
If you're running IIS7 on a non-SP1 Vista, you can get FastCGI as a download for x86 and x64 as well. However, if you're running Vista SP1 Beta, as I am in the video, or Windows 2008 RC0, then you've already got FastCGI. One less step, eh? Check it out in the video.
WCat (Web Capacity Analysis Tool) 6.3
In this video I use a tool call WCat that you can download in x86 and x64 flavors. It is very lightweight and can simulate thousands of concurrent users on even a laptop. I pushed my local IIS7 with caching to over 2000 requests a second. It's free, easy with a basic scripting language. It's a great way to beat on your development servers and do some powerful profiling. I loves me some free tools.
I have been thinking about doing a series of IIS7 screencasts to augment the very good articles on http://www.iis.net. If you haven't been over there, I recommend you check it out.
Anyway, if you've seen me speak on stage, you know I'm a visibility/accessibility wonk and I really like to think about how folks learn, etc. I've been working with Camtasia for a while now and doing some video editing in Sony Vegas. In the recent ALT.NET Videos I put myself in PIP (Picture in Picture) and the response (even though the video was very rough) was very positive. I think that PIP really adds a lot to a screencast, but only if combined with appropriate editing, callouts, zooming and moving/sizing of the PIP window to make sure nothing is obscured. I wonder if you agree?
I'm interested in both your thoughts and opinions on the FastCGI stuff but also on Screencasts in general:
- I'd also like to try creating screencasts that look great at 640x480 but also would be viewable on a 320x240 screen using Zoom and Pan or a Viewfinder technique. Do you have any interest in that?
- Are screencasts a big part of your learning process?
- Does Picture in Picture add value to you?
- Do you prefer a fairly casual screencast with PIP like I've done here, or a more formal greenscreen/floating head with a nice suit reading a script. This screencast was fairly "organic" on purpose because it's real. There's no fakery.
Thanks, Dear Reader.
 Cat's Pajamas - An adjective used by hipsters of the 1920's to describe a person who is the best at what they do. lso used to describe another person who is genial and fun to be with.
"Martin sure knows how to dance, he's the cats pajamas, man!""